South Africa adds Ghana, Sao Tome and Principe to visa-free countries list, 'working' on Nigeria, others

Passengers at Kotoka Airport Ghana (kuulpeeps)
  • Ghana, Sao Tome can now visit South Africa without a visa. 
  • The country also relaxes visa requirements for Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Cuba, the United Arab Emirates, and New Zealand.
  • Aaron Motsoaledi, Minister of Home Affairs, says South Africa is still doing some 'homework' on Nigeria and two other nations.

South Africa has added Ghana and Sao Tome and Principle to its visa-free country list to boost tourism.

The other countries on the list include Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Cuba, the United Arab Emirates, and New Zealand.

South Africa's Department of Home Affairs made this announcement in a statement issued on Wednesday.

Aaron Motsoaledi, Minister of Home Affairs, says the seven new countries will be able to enter South Africa without a visa.

Motsoaledi says the country will kick off its new eVisa system in November 2019.

“Tourism will soar if we relax visa requirements for entry into South Africa. We know that Tourism is very important for job creation.

“Out of the 193 countries who are member states of the United Nations, the Department has granted visa-free status to 75 countries. Of these 16 are in our continent and are SADC members and 59 are from all over the world,” he said.

Motsoaledi said the country is doing some 'homework' about Nigeria and two other world's populous nations, India and China but for the meantime, double its Home Affairs staff in these nations to process visas.

We will immediately enter into discussions with them about how a visa-free regime will work. We still have some homework to do for 3 countries whose combined populations make up close to 30% of the world’s population i.e. China, India, and Nigeria.

“While we are busy tackling the matter of the three countries. For now, we shall this financial year, increase 2½ times the number of people who work for Home Affairs to process visas in both China and India. We shall increase 2 times the number of people who process visas to our country in Nigeria,” he said in a speech seen by Business Insider SSA.

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